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Web Events (more headlines) 04-19-2014

Youku Tudou Beta Launches Interactive Entertainment Platform

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Youku Tudou Inc., China's leading Internet television company, recently launched the beta version of an interactive entertainment platform, "Xingmen (www.xingmeng.com)", that will enable millions of fans to directly connect with their favorite celebrities, musicians, and grassroots talents. The interactive product, available for use on PC and later on mobile, enables viewers to watch live broadcasts of concerts, performances, and other entertainment while simultaneously engaging in online chat, comments, and the gifting of virtual goods. Other crowd-rewarding features and live video chat will soon be available.

One key mission of the platform is for it to serve as a launchpad for stars and grassroots talents who can open their own channels on the platform, enabling them to cultivate broader fan bases, generate shared revenues from the sale of virtual goods and, depending on their popularity, have the chance to be a part of Youku Tudou's in-house produced microfilms, web serials, variety shows, and other entertainment, which normally attract millions of views. Since inception, Youku and Tudou have enabled numerous undiscovered actors, musicians, and other talents to gain widespread fame in China. Many have made it to TV stations, including CCTV's famous Chinese New Year Gala.

Cultivating undiscovered talent as well as experimenting with interactive online platforms are a part of Youku Tudou's DNA. In 2009, the Internet television company held a live webcast of a music concert sponsored by Nokia. Later in 2013 and 2014, Youku Tudou live broadcast concerts from Psy and Lincoln Park. Youku Tudou has also been incorporating interactive features, including the sale of virtual goods and voting, into its online content as part of an effort to elevate viewer experience and monetize the gigantic traffic.

"The interactive entertainment platform is an extension of Youku Tudou's ongoing efforts to innovate entertainment with interactive features," said Yang Weidong, President of Tudou. "It also reaffirms our commitment to supporting talents at the grassroots level and to building a sustainable direct-to-consumer revenue source, leveraging our existing community of more than 450 million users."

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